The Power Of Power In Les Miserables And The Kite Runner

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What is power? Power has been the demise of leaders, empires, and the cause of war. Can power be used for good? Both Les Miserables and The Kite Runner can be juxtaposed to show power, what it is, and what it can be used for. Les Miserables and The Kite Runner show that power is subjective, and has many different interpretations. Merriam-Webster dictionary has many definitions of power. Power could be considered the “ability to produce an effect,” or “physical might,” or even “possession of control, authority, or influence over others.” Wealth is a form of power. We see two different elements of this in both selections of literature. In Les Miserables, Jean Valjean, the former convict, uses wealth that he acquires under the name Mayor Madeleine to provide jobs for his constituents in a factory that he owns. Valjean used his power through wealth to empower many others to make their own wealth. This use of power is noble and just. Instead of giving others money or gifts, he gives them the gift of empowering themselves through sustainable work. This is a redeeming moment of Jean Valjean’s character, contrasting his past as a convict. Baba is the father of Amir, the protagonist in The Kite Runner. He is a man of great influence, and possesses a strong moral compass. Baba is a very well-written, realistic character. He is not restricted to good or bad, but blurs the lines. The way he uses his wealth is one of his better qualities meant to counteract some of his worse

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